You can’t have it both ways

THERE was a time back in the 2000’s when people aggressively criticized US foreign policy. Former US President George W. Bush and the Neocons were aggressively spreading ‘human rights’ and ‘liberal democracy’ all over the Middle East. But no one liked those wars, including numerous Americans who saw them as cynical ploys to advance the interests of the military industrial complex.

When Bush’s term was over, he was replaced by a Democrat who seemed like he would be able to end all the wars. Former US President Barack Obama was elected because he was perceived as the opposite of Bush, a peace loving person of color who symbolized the altruistic, ‘inclusive’ side of America. A lot of people at that time believed that Obama would be able to end US military adventurism in the Middle East, or at least, dial it back a little.

He failed, and in some ways, he even escalated the problem.

Now that Trump has pulled out US troops from Northern Syria, a lot of people are gnashing their teeth. They accuse the Big Orange Man of betraying the Kurds, and of abetting the evil Turks (which is an official US ally and NATO member by the way) in exterminating them. There are also claims that Trump has destabilized the Middle East by withdrawing US forces. There are even calls on Twitter to “Save Rojava,” a major Kurdish settlement structured around some variant of Anarchism.

There’s really only one consistent response to these complaints, “You asked for it.” For many years, people in and out of the US have complained about the World Police. Well, under Trump, the US is dialing back ‘some’ of its overseas commitments. In response, various groups all over the world are complaining.

Well, you can’t have it both ways. You can’t complain about how the US is evil for its interventionist policies and complain when those policies are ended. You can’t complain about how the US is a bigoted, racist country and then ask to immigrate into it.

But this isn’t about consistency. It’s about management. Many factions and forces all over the world want America to manage the world, so that various contradicting interests are served without suffering any of the consequences.

The Turkish-Kurdish equation is an excellent example of this. Both the Turks and the Kurds are US allies, and yet both are at odds with one another. The only reason why the situation has not escalated is because the US has prevented them from sorting their grievances with one another. Well, the US pulling out now, and without it to manage things, things will spiral out of control, and this is what ultimately scares people.

They may not like the World Police, but now that it’s handing over its badge, they are crying out bloody murder. Well, you can’t have it both ways. It’s time for Americans to go home. It’s time for everyone to go home and sort out their own problems. ([email protected]/PN)

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